More than 6.4 million foreign tourists visited Brazil in 2014, the largest number ever according to the latest statistics. 217,003 were from the UK, up from 169,732 in 2013.
Of course, the 2014 World Cup was the main reason for the 10.6 per cent increase against 2013 figures.
In June, the month during which the World Cup was held, the arrival of international tourists almost tripled, jumping from 350,025 in 2013 to 1,018,876 in 2014. And it expects numbers to continue to rise as 2016 sees Rio host the Olympics and Paralympics.
“The numbers show that the World Cup was big business for tourism. Now the challenge is to guarantee conditions for the sector to keep growing”, said the Minister of Tourism, Henrique Alves. “Mega events are excellent catalysts for increasing tourism flows for destinations, but in order to maintain consistent growth, we need to address structural issues and approach tourism with professionalism in Brazil.”
With their focus on the Olympics and Paralympics, the government are working to remove the requirement for North Americans to apply for a visa from August of this year until the end of the 2016 Games.